Integrated Genomics Awarded EPA Butanol Production SBIR

CHICAGO, IL - March 14, 2007

Integrated Genomics has been awarded a Phase 1 Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to develop methods to improve the bio-production of butanol. Currently butanol is produced from petroleum feedstock.

Dr. Anamitra Bhattacharyya, Integrated Genomics’ Vice President of Research, says the company is currently trying to produce higher yields of butanol by reducing the effect of solvent toxicity on the production microbes. Existing technology, he notes, falters beyond 1.3-1.5% butanol as the microbes are poisoned. Integrated Genomics’ will engineer the metabolism of the bugs in order to develop microbial strains that have higher levels of tolerance to butanol. This will involve using in-house comparative genomic and molecular genetic approaches. Dr. Bhattacharyya says preliminary results are promising and within six months the company hopes to find a partner with which to scale up the technology. Butanol is a superior biofuel compared to ethanol for various reasons: butanol has higher energy content than ethanol; is easier to handle, and can be added at higher concentration to gasoline blends. 

About Integrated Genomics, Inc.
Integrated Genomics provides microbial bioinformatics products and services for the life science industry, with a recent focus on the use of in silico strategies for comparative genomics. The company’s expertise in microbial genomics includes sequencing, genome analysis and custom bioinformatics. IG has developed and distributed ERGO™, the most advanced and comprehensive bioinformatics suite for microbial genomics on the market. ERGO™ contains the largest available integration of microbial genome data, including genome-derived metabolic reconstructions and representing the chemical reaction networks of metabolic pathways.

Vinayak Kapatral, Ph.D.
Vice President, Business Development
Integrated Genomics
(312) 491-0846 ext.326